So, some digital information has leaked from its home. Its been played with by an excel monkey and plotted on maps. It shouldn’t have happened, but it has. Doh! doesn’t quite cover it when I think of the stupidity of some people.
While there are many political uses of the information, the lists of names of membership of any organisation should be kept private. Lists of names, as Tom Steinberg (MySociety) said, start us down a path best not begun. There are lots of lists of names missing or lost about the place, perhaps they shouldn’t be seeded as torrents or publicly searchable. Just because there are techniques to mash this data and present it in interesting ways (against ethnicity data, or social deprivation indexes, or just against voter turnout) does not mean that anyone should.
From an Information Governance and Information Security perspective, these BNP kids are going to have to get their act together. The Information Commissioner is going to want to have words with them. Perhaps there will be court proceedings for breech of human rights act and data protection legislation; although perhaps in not quite the way that Nick Griffin expects, with claims against the BNP for negligence.